See the tagline above? That's what the floppy drive needs to do. It can take floppy disks with it too. Those fscking things are the bane of my life, I kid you not. I have roughly 400 3.5" 1.44MB floppy disks in my house, collected over the years from my DOS and Windows 3.11 days. And how many work? As of this afternoon and the creation of this article, a staggering.....wait for it.....one. One. I tell a lie actually, I have a second that has the first 300KB or so usable before dying a nasty sector access death.
So out of 576MB of usable removable storage in 400 handy bites, I have about 1.8MB and 398 frisbees. Bollocks.
And I need that working disk to install Windows XP on disk controllers that the OS has no clue about. Because Windows XP, paragon of technical virtue, needs the antiquated nonsense as a means to add additional mass storage drivers. Nice one Einsteins. And you just know that solitary disk that I rely on for a living is going to die, randomly, when I need it most. Sod Sod and his sodding law.
But all that doesn't matter these days, thanks to Iomega. In creating the USB Zip drive, they forced booting from USB Zip drives into BIOS's world wide. Now pretty much any USB device that advertises itself as a Mass Storage Device is fair game for a good booting.
So my melodrama at the start of the page is unfounded and I could have just bought a cheap USB pen drive and been rid of them. But I'm a cheap bastard and paying for computer hardware is just wrong, so I've suffered. Technological masochism is something we can all identify with.
So when the lovely chaps at USB-PenDrive.co.uk got in touch and asked if they could send a sample over, I could hardly say no.